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The World in Medicine
October 19, 2005

Work-Related Illness, Injury

JAMA. 2005;294(15):1890. doi:10.1001/jama.294.15.1890-c

Although the number of work-related illnesses and deaths has lessened somewhat in industrialized countries, the rate seems to be increasing in many developing countries, according to a new report released at the 17th World Congress on Safety and Health at Work by the United Nations’ International Labor Organization (ILO).

According to the latest ILO estimates, 2.2 million people die of work-related injuries and diseases worldwide each year, a 10% increase from the estimate for work-related deaths given in a similar report in 2002. This figure may be a vast underestimate, however, due to poor reporting in many developing countries, the report’s authors note. The majority of people in the global workforce lack legal protections, preventive safety or health measures, or access to occupational health services, the ILO noted.

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